Correction: First cousin marriages

Keith Hudson

A correction is in order.  Yesterday, where I expressed my anger at the lack of courage in politicians (and our Prime Minister in particular) my wires were crossed as between first cousin marriages and female . . . circumcision.  This is more usually termed female genetical mutilation (FGM), these days.  First cousin marriages, while slightly risky from the genetics point of view (3% more incidence of handicapped children than in the general population) are, in fact, perfectly legal in this country.  I should have realised this because I’m reminded that Charles Darwin and his wife were first cousins. I’ve now removed the kin correct posting.

So my further comments about first cousin marriages in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan were not justified.  There are indeed more first cousin marriages there but only slightly so (with a consequent 5% risk of handicapped children above the norm) than in this country.

My anger at politicians — still justified — lay in the neglect of prosecutions in this country against parents allowing their daughters to be circumcised. This is harmless in boys but nasty to varying degrees in girls between the ‘mere’ removal of the clitoris through to that plus the removal of the labia through to almost complete sewing up of the vagina.  This is not practised in Saudi Arabia to any extent though 8% of daughters are affected in northern-adjacent Iraq and 19% in southern-adjacent Yemen.

Female genetical mutilation is practised to varying extents throughout northern Africa from west to east, but the worst region is in the north-east alongside the Red Sea. The incidence of FGM in Egypt is 91%, Sudan 88%, Ethiopia 74% and Somalia 98%. Immigrant parents in England originally from those countries are still allowing this to be carried out on their daughters,

Hiowever, to return to arranged marriages of daughters of Pakistani (and Bangladeshi) immigrant parents in this country, some daughters are willing but many are not and they are being inveigled back to their paetns’ country of origin on the pretext of a holiday when, kin fact, they are quickly married on arrival  (to fierst cousins or otherwise) against their wish.  It is these marriages that David  Cameron and his government should be stopping as not only against ‘British values’ but against British law.

One thought on “Correction: First cousin marriages

  1. There is controversy about male circumcision too. Our daughter-in-law is a pediatrician and internist, trained in Massachusetts within the past 15 years and practicing here for around 7 years. She and our son opted not to have our grandsons circumcised. I agree with that decision as cleanliness will not be an issue, and the pain and alteration of a natural state is thus not justified.

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